USDA Rural Development Director Sarah Adler says with interest rates at historically low levels, homeowners who are current on payments may be eligible for the Rural Refinance Pilot Program announced last week.
The program is being offered in 19 states hardest hit by the recession, including Nevada.
The program targets homeowners with existing USDA loans who have paid their mortgage on time for the past 12 months.
Officials estimate nearly 1,800 loans in Nevada may be qualify for refinancing. In Washoe County, 219 loans are eligible for the program. Lyon County has the most with 646, while Clark County has 174, Elko County has 187 and some counties, such as Eureka, have as few as one eligible loan.
On a recent refinance in Minden, a 30-year loan for $166,326 was refinanced, dropping the homebuyer’s payment from $944 to $806, saving nearly $50,000 over the life of the loan.
Jessica Jensen, the real estate agent with Guild Mortgage in Minden who refinanced the home, said she uses the USDA home loan program every chance she gets.
“It’s easy,” she said. “Most folks in our rural areas are eligible, and it helps people who thought they would never get into a home. It’s competitively priced and easier than the other federal loan programs.”
Homeowners can contact the state Office of USDA Rural Development at 887-1222 for more information.